Survey Assignment Write Up
Overview: This assignment requires you to administer a survey of twenty questions to ten U.S. citizens. The purpose of this survey is to test the civic knowledge of people in your peer group. I would like half of the people you survey to be complete strangers to you–the other half can be known to you (e.g., friends, family, and work colleagues). The first ten questions on the survey are the same questions that you answered on the citizenship exam that you took on the first day of class and the answer can be found by referring back to that exam. The second ten questions are geography questions that I came up with to test your peers’ geographic literacy. Please use a map to verify that you know what the correct answers before you give others the exam. In other words, I want you to look up where each country is. To increase the survey’s reliability, please use the attached. Once the surveys are completed, please input your results into the attached excel . Ultimately, when you turn in your assignment, you will need to upload your results (as an Excel spread sheet) and your write-up (as a Word document). Please note that if you upload these documents in a format that I cannot open you will be penalized. In the write-up, I would like you to summarize, analyze and reflect on your survey results in light of the materials that I have assigned related to civic ignorance (Shenkman, Romano, Souter, Schubert, and McRaney are particularly relevant). Make sure you cite course content in your write-up; if you do not you will be penalized.
Style Requirements: Your write-up should be no less than one-page and no more than two-pages, single-spaced, typed with Times New Roman, 12 pt font, and 1-inch margins. Please make sure that your write-up is formatted correctly. If it is not, you will be penalized. I would recommend writing more rather than less, but one page is the minimum. Your paper should include a clear and descriptive title as well as proper spelling, syntax and grammar. You do not need a heading as this takes up unnecessary space–I know who you are, what the date is, etc. when you submit your assignment electronically. Finally, make sure you include paragraph indentations in your write-up, although I would prefer you not include spaces between paragraphs.
What You Will Be Evaluated On: You will be evaluated on: (1) the extent to which you follow directions and present your survey data correctly and (2) the clarity, organization and depth of your summary, analysis and reflection on your survey responses. Make sure you incorporate the assigned readings (Shenkman, Romano, etc.). Questions to think about, in no particular order, include:
- Was it difficult to find people to survey? Who did you survey? Why? How representative of the general population do you think the people you surveyed were/are?
- What was the high/low score on each exam? What was the average score on each exam?
- Did people do better/worse than you did, better/worse than you thought they would do, better/worse than Americans in the national surveys you read about earlier in the quarter? Etc.
- How did people respond when you asked them to take the tests? How did they respond when you told them their scores?
- After taking conducting these surveys, taking the exams yourself, and reading about civic ignorance during the first week, do you think we have a problem with civic ignorance in the United States? Why or why not? Assuming you do, what, if anything, do you think could/should be done about the problem? Should we get rid of the citizenship exam, make people pass the citizenship exam before they are allowed to vote, revise the citizenship exam, etc.? Why? Please be specific. There is no right answer.